Courts

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VW exec behind diesel cheat gets prison time

James Robert Liang, an engineer at Volkswagen, has been sentenced to 40 months in prison for knowingly working to cover up the fact that the German automaker was cheating on diesel emissions tests. The sentence also carries a fine of $200,000, which was an even steeper punishment than prosecutors had initially requested. By Jo Borrás  “The […]

August 29th

Restore the Delta joins lawsuit against Delta Tunnels project

A coalition of conservation groups is suing the California Department of Water Resources over its approval of the controversial Delta Tunnels project. “Once again Big Ag in the San Joaquin Valley has come begging for more corporate welfare,” said Adam Keats, a senior attorney at the Center for Food Safety. “Only this time it’s at […]

August 26th

DAPL pipeline company sues “eco-terrorist” environmental groups

The pipeline operator Energy Transfer has filed a lawsuit against Greenpeace, Earth First, and a number of other organizations, alleging that attempts to solicit donations and interfere with construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline constituted “eco-terrorism.” By James Ayre  In other words, Energy Transfer alleges that the environmental groups in question engaged in “acts of terrorism” […]

August 25th

D.C. court hands EPA’s Pruitt a defeat over Obama’s methane rule

In case you missed it, a divided three-judge panel of the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Monday that Scott Pruitt, the Environmental Protection Agency-hating EPA administrator, overstepped his authority by delaying enforcement of the standards in a rule designed by the Obama administration to reduce methane emissions from new equipment at oil and gas operations. The court ordered Pruitt to […]

July 5th

Boom! Court rules Trump can’t delay enforcing EPA methane rule

While Pruitt’s (and Trump’s) EPA does its best to do its worst for the environment, and slow down and delay anything it can’t break outright, we do have one thing going for us: The Rule of Law. There are some things even Trump can’t do, and the DC Circuit just ruled that the EPA’s rule on methane pollution […]

July 3rd

DAPL Pipeline loses to Standing Rock Sioux in court

Federal judge James Boasberg has twice ruled against petitions brought by the Standing Rock Sioux tribe that sought to block the Dakota Access pipeline (DAPL). On June 14, Judge Boasberg ruled in favor of the tribe on a third petition. By Steve Hanley  In a 91-page decision, the judge ruled the Army Corps of Engineers […]

June 15th

Supreme Court hands Monsanto the farm

In a huge disappointment to organic food and non-GMO activists, the Supreme Court gave Monsanto a huge victory this morning. There had been some hope that they would re-evaluate the crazy notion that companies can patent life-forms. It is, after all, an idea that would have been laughed at by the founding fathers of this […]

May 13th

Uh oh… ending corporate personhood isn’t enough to fix our democracy

We’ve written quite a lot about the problems with the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision, and how it unleashed a tsunami of corporate campaign cash that is swamping our democracy. (For background, see: The Story of Citizens United – Why democracy only works when people are in charge.) But writing at The American Prospect, writer/law […]

April 17th

Supreme Court upholds Endangered Species Act

The right-wing majority on the U.S. Supreme Court has been using its muscle to cut back on the power of the Federal Government. In particular, there are concerns that it made invalidate some of the broad authority the government has assumed over the years under the Interstate Commerce Clause of the Constitution. So it’s encouraging […]

November 1st